Saturday, December 28th 2013, I was able to get back down to Burnside with the guys to check on the progress of the project. Things seem to have slowed down some, but most of the major parts of the project are now complete.

The CP at WOODS has now been moved to the new location, about a mile South of where it used to be (and right across from where the old CNO&TP Ferguson backshop used to be). The new signals and crossover are now in service, and the old searchlight signals at the old location are sadly, gone.. The new concrete bridge over the tracks at Jones Knob is now open for traffic, and the old wooden A frame bridge that it replaced is now sadly, gone. The new bridge over Pittman Creek is now complete and ready for rail, but they wont be able to cut it in until the last cut just South of the bridge is finished (and they are almost done with that).

The new ties and rail for what will become the new #2 track is in place across the entire stretch now, with the exception of a couple of the cuts and the bridge over Pittman Creek. The fact that the new track zig-zags from the West Side to the East side in several places leads me to believe that they plan to relocated the existing mainline in a few places to ease curvature and increase track speed. It looked like most all of the utility and drainage work was complete, and once they finish with the last of the blasting on a couple of the cuts, it wont take long to put it all together. The only place we didnt really check out (up close) was around the CP at Grove, but I did notice from the road that it looked like they had finished the grading and had the new track in place even that far South. I will investigate that more on the next trip.

Here are a few pictures of the work from 12/28/13. You can follow the progress of the whole project at the special gallery I set up over on Pbase at this link (and remember that they images are in chronological order, with the newest on the bottom of the page) >>>>> (Gallery) CP Woods to CP Grove Double Track Project Photo Gallery by E.M. & Carmon Bell at pbase.com

Southbound 285 comes by the new CP at Woods. The location of the old Control Point was about a mile North of this location (back just around the curve). You can see a derail just South of the crossover on what will be the new #2 track, which is not yet in service South of this point. I still cant wrap my head around WHY it was a good idea to move the signals here...If a Southbound train has to stop here, it will have a pair of crossing blocked, and a Northbound will have 1 crossing blocked.


Southbound 275 swings around the curve as it crosses the Pittman Creek Bridge. As you can see, the new span is now finished and ready for rail. I have been told that once the new track is cut in and the new bridge placed in service, the current old span will be taken out of service for several months and be rebuilt / replaced.


The contractors are still working to finish widening the cut just South of the Pittman Creek Bridge. They have been working on this one longer than some of the bigger cuts, and that had me wondering what the problem with it could be. I would assume that the old highway will also have to be moved over some here, as the edge of the cut is right at the edge of the road.


Northbound 224 passes under the new Jones Knob bridge. A year ago, this area looked nothing like this..it was so grown up you could not ever see the tracks from the road.


Northbound 216 comes through the finished cut just South of Jones Knob. This is once of the locations where the new track swaps sides, leading me to believe that the RR will relocated both tracks to ease the curvature some and raise track speed.